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Released On: August 12, 2010

Reclamation Announces $2 Million for Advanced Water Treatment Pilot and Demonstration Grants through WaterSMART Program
Bureau of Reclamation Commissioner Michael Connor announced today the selection of $2,034,208 in WaterSMART grants for Advanced Water Treatment Pilot and Demonstration projects. This money will be leveraged to fund over $14.9 million in total project costs.

"The demands being placed upon our water supply are great and innovative solutions must be developed to help stretch that supply," said Commissioner Connor. "These grants will help us grow our knowledge in advanced water treatment technologies and make them more affordable and efficient in the future."

The goal of these grants is to accelerate the adoption and use of advanced water treatment technologies to help increase water supply. The funded projects will provide a better understanding of the technical, economic, and environmental viability of treating and using brackish groundwater, seawater, impaired waters, or otherwise creating new water supplies in a given locale.

This year, three pilot studies and one demonstration project were selected. Those selected to receive grants this year are:

  • Sanitation Districts of Los Angeles County, Joint Water Purification Pilot Program. These districts will receive $334,208 in Reclamation funding with a total project cost of $831,907. The Sanitation Districts of Los Angeles County and the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California will collaborate on the proposed project that will evaluate the feasibility of a regional indirect potable reuse program to purify treated wastewater.
  • Los Angeles Department of Water and Power Groundwater Replenishment Treatment Pilot Study. They will receive $600,000 in Reclamation funding with a total project cost of $2,274,099. The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power will address the technical and economic viability of groundwater replenishment in the City of Los Angeles. Groundwater replenishment sends advanced treated recycled water to spreading basins to percolate underground and become part of the groundwater supply for future use.
  • West Basin Municipal Water District (California), Ocean Water Desalination Demonstration Project. This district will receive $600,000 in Reclamation funding with a total project cost of $10,600,526. The Ocean Water Desalination Demonstration Project will evaluate various alternative technologies for ocean water desalination along the Pacific Ocean. The demonstration facility will utilize approximately 580,000 gallons per day of ocean water to test intake technologies, pre-treatment systems, reverse osmosis technology, and post-treatment options.
  • Municipal Water District of Orange County, Pilot Plant Testing of Slant Well Seawater Intakes and Advanced Water Treatment Pretreatment Technologies for Control and Removal of Low Levels of Iron and Manganese. This project will receive $500,000 in Reclamation funding with a total project cost of $1,250,000. The project will develop pilot tests for a new operational pilot seawater desalination test facility. The facility will implement a slant well intake, which is meant to avoid environmental concerns associated with open-intake facilities by utilizing natural filtration through the ocean floor and underlying alluvial deposits.

WaterSMART is a program of the U.S. Department of the Interior that focuses on improving water conservation and sustainability, and helping water-resource managers make sound decisions about water use. It identifies strategies to ensure that this and future generations will have sufficient supplies of clean water for drinking, economic activities, recreation, and ecosystem health. The Program also identifies adaptive measures to address climate change and its impact on future water demands.

Editor's Note: A complete description of the projects is attached.

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Reclamation is the largest wholesale water supplier and the second largest producer of hydroelectric power in the United States, with operations and facilities in the 17 Western States. Its facilities also provide substantial flood control, recreation, and fish and wildlife benefits. Visit our website at www.usbr.gov.